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CH 21 "THE INNER PICTURE"
A COURSE IN MIRACLES
VII. REASON AND CORRECTION
61 No one can think but for himself, as God thinks not without His Son. Only were both in bodies could this be. Nor could one mind think only for itself unless the body were the mind. For only bodies can be separate and therefore unreal. The home of madness cannot be the home of reason. Yet it is easy to leave the home of madness if you see reason. You do not leave insanity by going somewhere else. You leave it simply by accepting reason where madness was. Madness and reason see the same things, but it is certain that they look upon them differently.
A COURSE IN MIRACLES
WORKBOOK for STUDENTS
WHAT IS SALVATION
Voice and Music by CIMS SonShip Radio
Salvation is a promise, made by God,
that you would find your way to Him at last.
It cannot but be kept. It guarantees
that time will have an end, and all the thoughts
that have been born in time will end as well.
God's Word is given every mind that thinks
that it has separate thoughts, and will replace
these thoughts of conflict with the Thought of peace.
The Thought of peace was given to God's Son
the instant that his mind had thought of war.
There was no need for such a Thought before,
for peace was given without opposite,
and merely was. But when the mind is split,
there is a need of healing. So the Thought
Which has the power to heal the split became
a part of every fragment of the mind
which still was one, but failed to recognize
its oneness. Now it did not know itself,
and thought its own identity was lost.
Salvation is undoing in the sense
that it does nothing, failing to support
the world of dreams and malice. Thus it lets
illusions go. By not supporting them,
it merely lets them quietly go down
to dust. And what they hid is now revealed;
an altar to the holy Name of God,
whereon His Word is written, with the gifts
of your forgiveness laid before It, and
the memory of God not far behind.
Let us come daily to this holy place,
and spend a while together. Here we share
our final dream. It is a dream in which
there is no sorrow, for it holds a hint
of all the glory given us by God.
The grass is pushing through the soil, the trees
are budding now, and birds have come to live
within their branches. Earth is being born
again in new perception. Night has gone,
and we have come together in the light.
From here we give salvation to the world,
for it is here salvation was received.
The song of our rejoicing is the call
to all the world that freedom is returned,
that time is almost over, and God's Son
has but an instant more to wait until
his Father is remembered, dreams are done,
eternity has shined away the world,
and only Heaven now exists at all.
~ Original Handscript of ACIM October 1, 1970
A COURSE IN MIRACLES
L e s s o n 239
The glory of my Father is my own.
Voice and Music by CIMS SonShip Radio
Let not the truth about ourselves today
be hidden by a false humility.
Let us instead be thankful for the gifts
our Father gave us. Can we see in those
with whom He shares His glory any trace
of sin and guilt? And can it be that we
are not among them, when He loves His Son
forever and with perfect constancy,
knowing he is as He created him?
We thank you, Father, for the light that shines
forever in us. And we honor it,
because You share it with us. We are one,
united in this light and one with You,
at peace with all creation and ourselves.
~ Original Handscript of ACIM
ACIM Edmonton - Sarah's Reflections
The glory of my Father is my own.
This is a beautiful reminder of who we are and who are brothers are as One with us. "Can we see in those with whom He shares His glory any trace of sin and guilt?" (W.239.1.3) We do see sin and guilt in others, but it is not the truth of who they are. Certainly, we are unaware of this truth because we have bought into the ego story that we have sinned and are now guilty and deserve to be punished. We see ourselves as body identities and hide out from God because of our unconscious belief that He is the ultimate judge of our sin. Jesus urges us not to let, "the truth about ourselves today be hidden by a false humility." (W.239.1.1) To the ego, accepting ourselves as guilty sinners is humble, but Jesus tells us this is arrogance. In this arrogance, we defy "the gifts our Father gave us" (W.239.1.2) when we decide we are guilty sinners, instead of accepting His gifts in gratitude. "A major tenet in the ego's insane religion is that sin is not error but truth, and it is innocence that would deceive. Purity is seen as arrogance, and the acceptance of the self as sinful is perceived as holiness." (T.19.II.4.1-2) (ACIM OE T.19.III.20) We insist that we are right about the terrible things we have done and that we must continue to punish ourselves for our sins.
Our belief in our unworthiness comes from the belief that we have destroyed our home and stolen our identity from God. Thus, we feel undeserving of His Love. But Jesus reminds us that God created us sinless. We share all of God's attributes. We are divine, eternal, holy Beings of light, and love. In our false humility, we are choosing to decide otherwise. Who is right? Is it God or me? When I believe in my separate identity, I am choosing to be right, and in that choice, I am declaring my arrogance. "Would you not rather that all this is nothing more than a mistake, entirely correctable, and so easily escaped from that its whole correction is like walking through a mist into the sun? For that is all it is. Perhaps you would be tempted to agree with the ego that it is far better to be sinful than mistaken. Yet think you carefully before you allow yourself to make this choice. Approach it not lightly, for it is the choice of hell or Heaven." (T.19.II.8.1-5) (ACIM OE T.19.III.24)
We can be truly grateful for the gifts our Father has given us. When we accept the truth about ourselves, we accept the Atonement, which has made it impossible for us to ever change ourselves. In the acceptance of our innocence, there is no more conflict in the mind. "Innocence is strength, and nothing else is strong. The sinless cannot fear, for sin of any kind is weakness." (T.23.IN.1.2-3) (ACIM OE T.23.I.1) As a result of holding the belief in our frailty, we attack, which is a show of strength to cover our weakness, but Jesus assures us, "No one is strong who has an enemy, and no one can attack unless he thinks he has." (T.23.IN.1.5) (ACIM OE T.23.I.1) When we recognize in ourselves the gifts our Father has given us and we are grateful for them, we see only the innocence of our brothers. As we become willing to see their innocence, we strengthen the acceptance of our own sinless state.
Our focus continues to be on the promise God made to us---that we would find our way to Him at last. All that is required is our cooperation and our willingness. We need to continue to bring all the doubts, fears, sadness, judgment, guilt, arrogance, specialness, conflict, and sacrifice, as well as feelings of unworthiness, before the feet of Holiness to be dissolved into the nothingness they are. We also need to remember that what we see in our brothers is a projection of the guilt and fear in ourselves. As we take responsibility for our projections and release them to the Holy Spirit, we can indeed experience our own glory.
In our daily practice with this Lesson, we continue with the same instruction to read "What is salvation?" and pray the prayer with conviction and sincerity, adding whatever thoughts come up related to this reading. We do what is necessary for this reading to be experienced as deep, sincere, and meaningful. We do the morning and evening meditation and remember to apply forgiveness throughout the day when we are triggered by anything, or anyone. Today, claim your glory and your divine radiance, set aside all false humility, and be willing to see the innocence in everyone you meet, or even think about. Willingness is the key---the willingness to look behind our defenses and realize that we are all united with each other and with God.
Remember, the ego wants to elevate itself in any way it can. It will happily set off on the spiritual path because it enjoys the feeling that it is becoming more spiritual. It loves spiritual knowledge and power. It will continue on the path as long as it continues to accumulate more spiritual knowledge and power. In other words, the ego is becoming spiritualized, which is most unhelpful for one who is truly committed to awakening. Our function here is to overcome the ego and not to spiritualize it. The ego loves to affirm that it is God. This Lesson clearly states otherwise. God's glory is given us in our creation. It is His gift to us. It comes in our creation.
Nouk Sanchez has written about some signs we might look for as part of the spiritual ego. It includes things like refusing to look honestly at the ego in ourselves, not being willing to be vulnerable and transparent, lacking in self-awareness, taking an intellectual approach to the teachings, becoming spiritually righteous and proud, feeling spiritually superior to others, resistance to feedback from others, maintaining a mask of positivity, engaging in spiritual debates, and lacking in gratitude to others. Are we willing to question who is the one speaking---ego or Spirit? Am I listening deeply to others? Am I joining with my brother in true empathy and humility, or am I waiting to make my point that is already formulated in my own mind?
We can only know the answer when we recognize that we have been wrong about everything and are willing to surrender our way, our will, our self-concepts, and our control. How willing are we to let our self-concepts fall apart, to give up our story of who we are and how we got that way, to release our need to be liked, and to not defend who we think we are in the face of something being said about us that we do not like? Instead, can we watch what comes up in the face of seeming attack? Yes, fear will arise, but we have mighty help. Can we stay with the feelings that emerge instead of going into the story? That is what healing is about, and we need to do this work if we are to experience the truth about ourselves.
PAUSED FOR WEEKEND
A Course in Miracles
Chapter Twenty One
Voice and Music by Martin Weber, CIMS SonShip Radio
The Inner Picture
VII. Reason and Correction
59 Reason cannot see sin but
can see errors and leads to their correction. It does not value them, but their correction. Reason will also tell you when you think you sin, you call for help. Yet if you will not accept the help you call for, you will not believe that it is yours to give. And so you will not give it, thus
maintaining the belief. For uncorrected error of any kind deceives you about the power that is in you to
make correction. If it can correct and you allow it not to do so, you deny it to yourself and to your brother. And if he shares this same belief, you both will think that you are damned. This you could spare him and
yourself. For reason would not make way for correction in you alone.
60 Correction cannot be accepted or refused by you
without your brother. Sin would maintain it can. Yet reason tells you that you cannot see your brother or yourself as sinful and still perceive the other innocent. Who looks upon himself as guilty and sees a sinless world? And who can see a sinful world and look upon himself apart from it? Sin would maintain you must be separate. But reason tells you that this must be wrong. If you are joined, how could it be that you have private thoughts? And how could thoughts that enter into what but seems like yours alone have no effect at all on what
is yours? If minds are joined, this is impossible.
61 No one can think but for himself, as God thinks not without His Son. Only were both in bodies could this be. Nor could one mind think only for itself unless the body
were the mind. For only bodies can be separate and therefore unreal. The home of madness cannot be the home of reason. Yet it is easy to leave the home of madness if you see reason. You do not leave insanity by going somewhere else. You leave it simply by accepting reason where madness was. Madness and reason see the same things, but it is certain that they look upon them differently.
62 Madness is an attack on reason that drives it out of mind and takes its place. Reason does not attack but takes the place of madness quietly, replacing madness if it be the will of the insane to listen to it. But the insane know not their will. For they believe they see the body and let their madness tell them it is real. Reason would be incapable of this. And if you would defend the body against your reason, you will not understand the body or yourself.
63 The body does not separate you from your brother, and if you think it does, you are insane. But madness has a purpose and believes it also has the means to make its purpose real. To see the body as a barrier between what reason tells you
must be joined must be insane. Nor could you see it if you heard the voice of reason. What can there be that stands between what is continuous? And if there is nothing in between, how can what enters part be kept away from other parts? Reason would tell you this. But think what you must recognize if it be so.
64 If you choose sin instead of healing, you would condemn the Son of God to what can never be corrected. You tell him by your choice that he is damned---separate from you and from his Father forever and without a hope of safe return. You teach him this, and you will learn of him
exactly what you taught. For you can teach him only that he is as you would have him, and what you choose he be is but your choice for
you. Yet think not this is fearful. That you are joined to him is but a fact, not an interpretation. How can a fact be fearful unless it disagrees with what you hold more dear than truth? Reason will tell you that this fact is your
release. Neither your brother nor yourself can be attacked alone. But neither can accept a miracle instead
without the other being blessed by it and healed of pain.
65 Reason, like love, would reassure you and seeks not to frighten you. The power to heal the Son of God is given you because he
must be one with you. You
are responsible for how he sees himself. And reason tells you it is given you to change his whole mind, which is one with you, in just an instant. And any instant serves to bring complete correction of his errors and make him whole. The instant that you choose to let
yourself be healed, in that same instant is his whole salvation seen as complete with yours. Reason is given you to understand that this is so. For reason, kind as is the purpose for which it is the means, leads steadily away from madness toward the goal of truth. And here you will lay down the burden of denying truth.
This is the burden that is terrible, and not the truth.
66 That you are joined is your salvation---the gift of Heaven, not the gift of fear. Does Heaven seem to be a burden to you? In madness, yes. And yet what madness sees must be dispelled by reason. Reason assures you Heaven is what you
all you want. Listen to Him Who speaks with reason and brings your reason into line with His. Be willing to let reason be the means by which He would direct you how to leave insanity behind. Hide not behind insanity in order to escape from reason. What madness would conceal, the Holy Spirit still holds out for everyone to look upon with gladness.
are your brother's savior. He is
yours. Reason speaks happily indeed of this. This gracious plan was given love by Love. And what Love plans is like Itself in this: being united, It would have you learn what
you must be. And being one with It, it must be given you to give what It has given and gives still. Spend but an instant in the glad acceptance of what is given you to give your brother, and learn with him what has been given
both of you. To give is no more blessed than to receive. But neither is it less.
68 The Son of God is
always blessed as one. And as his gratitude goes out to you who blessed him, reason will tell you that it cannot be you stand apart from blessing. The gratitude he offers you reminds you of the thanks your Father gives you for completing Him. And here alone does reason tell you that you can understand what you must be. Your Father is as close to you as is your brother. Yet what is there that could be nearer you than is your Self?
69 The power that you have over the Son of God is not a threat to his reality. It but
attests to it. Where could his freedom lie but in himself if he be free already? And who could bind him but himself if he deny his freedom? God is not mocked; no more His Son can be imprisoned save by his own desire. And it is by his own desire that he is freed. Such is his strength and not his weakness. He
is at his own mercy. And where he chooses to be merciful, there is he free. But where he chooses to condemn instead, there is he held a prisoner, waiting in chains his pardon on himself to set him free.
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